Get the training day. For the price, it's a great value.
Second, try to spend as much time with attendees and talk to as many as you can.
For the sessions, prefer those which are not recorded as you can watch the others at home.
Try to ask people what they do with FileMaker and try to learn, get contacts and later remember the faces.
Take notes as soon as you get something interesting.
After DevCon you may watch videos, work through example projects and check all the notes.
Thanks Christian! This is HUGE help. I have enrolled in the training day already. I wasn't aware I could actually mingle with other participants and talk about stuff. As I said, I'm a novice! I appreciate your taking the time to give me solid advice!
Some advice I gave elsewhere:
Get to the sessions/tracks that you will most likely use the soonest for yourself or others.
If there is someone you'd like to have a conversation with, try to make pre-arrangements (PM on this forum, for example). It may only be between sessions, but trying to find someone is not always easy!
breathe (it will be cold inside and blazing out) as you WILL come away with a gem that made the whole thing worth it!
If there is a Developer's Challenge, i.e. a competitive team exercise, like there has been in the past, then I strongly encourage you to participate, regardless of your experience level.
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Pay attention to WHO is presenting a session as well as the content.
While all presenters have knowledge and a desire to share that knowledge/experience not all of them are great presenters.
Its been a few years since i've been to devcon but that was the single best piece of advice that i ever got about selecting sessions.
When two equally attractive topics are scheduled at the same time i usually go with the better presenter.
I went thru the schedule and 90% of the presenters are new to me so... ill just have to wing it this time.
Also dont be afraid to leave a session early if its not working for you.
This is my 6th DevCon, and I still remember my first. Here are some things I did to make sure I got my money's worth:
1. Attend every session you can. Some people pick and choose and skip some. I recommend not. Go to every session in every time block.
2. Attend a few sessions that are above your current level. The session might be tough to follow, but your brain can handle it and, eventually it will click, especially after reviewing (many times) the notes and the video.
3. Meet as many people as you can. I and my team at Soliant here are always willing to talk. We got cool new blue jackets with our logo on it. Walk up to any of us or any other person and say.
4. Rest. Take care of yourself. Eat. sleep, play, swim,
Last year I wrote a blog post about this very topic: FileMaker DevCon: A First-Timer's Guide - Soliant Consulting The theme is outdated, but the concepts are there. I've got another one for this year coming out today or tomorrow.
And feel free to hit me up. I'd be glad to say hi there. firstname.lastname@example.org
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Over breakfast and lunch, tell your table mates that it is your first DevCon and ask what sessions people recommend. Tell people a bit about yourself so that they can tailor recommendations to fit.
Bank some sleep in the week ahead of DevCon.
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All of the above are excellent suggestions. I have a few that I would add
1. On Monday we have the "New to DevCon" meet up at 4:30pm. This is a great way to get familiarized with how DevCon works and how to efficiently manage your time.
2. We are recording every session this year so it will make it easier for you to choose which sessions to attend.
3. Download the filemaker2go app here FileMaker DevCon2Go for 2017 - Download today! It is a great resource to help you plan out your schedule
4. We will have FileMaker Staff at the registration desk starting at 4pm on Sunday so if you need help or assistance we will be more than happy to answer any questions.
5. We are sending out an email next week that will contain a lot more information as well so keep an eye out for that.
I hope this helps and enjoy your first DevCon
wear comfortable shoes.
Phoenix, Arizona may be hot but the conference rooms are usually very cold...so I definitely recommend bringing a light jacket for the sessions.
Also, I personally find it best to download session materials ahead of time or as soon as they are available since most hotel wi-fi networks get bogged down by heavy usage once the conference starts and downloads become hectic. This also gives you the chance to review the materials ahead of time and pick which sessions you may wish/select to attend.
Unfortunately, there are some very, very smart FileMaker Pro developers with excellent programming skills who ... unfortunately ... give very poor and garbled presentations. As you browse through the list of courses, ask the people you're attending breakfast with for their opinions on who to avoid.